Publication - FOI/EIR release

COVID-19 advertising: FOI release

Published: 15 Sep 2021

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Published:
15 Sep 2021
COVID-19 advertising: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/202100225513
Date received: 28 Jul 2021
Date responded: 23 Aug 2021
Information requested

1) A list of all media outlets, including but not restricted to, newspapers, TV stations, radio stations, & the internet, who have received payments from the Scottish Government or its agents for advertisements regarding all information concerning the current pandemic, the restrictions, and vaccines.

2) A detailed breakdown of the financial amounts paid to each of the entities involved in the aforementioned advertising campaigns

Response

The following information covers 1 March 2020 to 31 July 2021.

1) All advertising for the Scottish Government campaigns linked to the coronavirus pandemic are booked via the appointed media buying agency, Republic of Media. The following is the list of media outlets who have received payment from Republic of Media on behalf of the Scottish Government for campaigns linked to coronavirus as recorded in the Republic of Media financial recording system. 

Video on demand
4OD(c4)
Adsmart
ITV broadcasting
ITV digital
Skygo
STV player
Virgin media

Digital
1XL
Acast ab
Adyoulike Ltd
Apple inc.
Bauer in-stream
Blis
Broughton spurtle
Crimtan
Daily record website
Dax
Dazn
DQ & A
Edinburgh reporter
Facebook inc
Google adwords
Invibes
Langtoon times
Location sciences ai ltd
Loopme ltd
Mail online
Media IQ digital
Midlothian view
Moat
Mobsta Ltd
My turriff
Nano interactive
North Edinburgh community news
Oath
Ogury
Reddit Inc
Regital PMP
Rommatic
Shetland news online
Snapchat
Spotify
Spotify self serve
Sublime skinz
Tan media Ltd
Teads ad manager
The Ferret
The Lochside press
The Sun
Tiktok
Trinity mirror network online
Twitch UK Ltd
Twitter international company
You Tube (Google)

Out of Home

Tactical media
Talon outdoor
Talon production
Talon: clear channel
Talon: global outdoor
Talon: JC decaux

Press

Aberdeen advertiser series
Aberdeen Evening Express
Aberdeen Press & Journal
Able magazine
Arran banner
Ayrshire Post
Ayrshire weekly press group
Buchan Observer group
Daily Express
Daily Mail
Daily Record
Dumfries & Galloway standard
Dumfries Courier
Dundee Courier
Dundee Evening telegraph
Edinburgh Evening news
Edinburgh reporter
Eskdale and Liddesdale advertiser
Evening times
Flourish newspaper
Glasgow Herald
Helensburgh and Lomond community ad
Iscot magazine
Lifestyle moray
Mail on Sunday
Media force Covid package
Media force pan Scotland package
Metro (Scotland) media force
Scotland on Sunday
Scottish Daily Mail
Snack magazine
Sun (Scotland)
Sun on Sunday (Scotland)
Sunday Express
Sunday Herald
Sunday Mail
Sunday Post
Sunday Times
The Nairnshire Telegraph Ltd
The National
The National on Sunday
The Scotsman
The Skinny
The Sun
The Times
Times (Scotland)
West Highland Free Press

Radio

Argyll radio
Awaz FM
Bauer production
Bauer Scotland
Caithness FM Ltd
Capital Scotland
Central FM
CFM 106.8
Classic FM Scotland
Cuillin FM
First Radio Sales Scotland
Heart Scotland
Heartland FM
Hits radio brand (Edin/Forth) 1
Hits radio brand (Edin/Forth) 2
Hits radio brand (Glas/Clyde) 1
Hits radio brand (Glas/Clyde) 2
Isles FM
K107 FM
Kingdom FM
Lochbroom FM
Mearns FM
Moray Firth 1
Moray Firth 2
Nevis radio
Northsound 1
Northsound 2
Oban FM
Original 106 FM
Panjab radio
Pulse 98.4 radio
Pulse radio
Pure radio
Radio borders
Radio Ramadan
Sam FM
SIBC
Smooth Scotland
Tay
Tay FM
TFM
Two Lochs radio
Wave FM 102 & 106.6
Waves radio 101.2 FM
West FM
Westsound
Your radio

Television channel

4 television
ITV breakfast
North by northwest
STV
STV Wes

2) While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide the information you have requested because an exemption under section 33 of FOISA applies to that information as disclosure would (or would be likely to) prejudice substantially the commercial interests of any person or organisation (section 33(1)(b));

All Scottish Government media buying and planning is delivered via agencies appointed through the Media planning buying and associated services 2019 to 2023 framework, and never directly with media owners or channels.

Using standard media buying software common to the sector, media buying agencies can access data on the volume of media purchased by their competitors. Providing the cost of this media alongside this would therefore enable competitors to determine the buying rates (price) for individual media companies.

This information is highly commercially sensitive within the sector and disclosure would materially disadvantage the Scottish Government contractor. Providing the specific expenditure broken down by media owners would allow competitors of the media buying agency to calculate the rates negotiated by the appointed media buying agency who work on behalf of the Scottish Government. This would commercially compromise the media buying agency.

The one exception is Digital advertising:
1XL  - £134,469
Acast ab - £5,000
Adyoulike Ltd  - £3,750
Apple inc.  - £1,400
Bauer in-stream  - £57,159
Blis  - £133,194
Broughton spurtle -  £840
Crimtan  - £12,000
Daily Record website -  £12,284
Dax -  £75,144
Dazn  - £40,596
DQ & A  - £33,392
Edinburgh reporter  - £840
Facebook inc  - £1,048,810
Google AdWords  - £192,216
Invibes -  £120,784
Langtoon times  - £360
Location sciences AI Ltd  - £130
Loopme Ltd  - £54,599
Mail online -  £48,020
Media  IQ Digital -  £64,985
Midlothian view  - £840
Moat -  £70,365
Mobsta ltd -  £114,182
My turriff  - £840
Nano interactive  - £6,500
North Edinburgh community news -  £240
Oath  - £21,412
Ogury  - £91,075
Reddit Inc. -  £5,645
Regital PMP  - £30,000
Rommatic  - £861,324
Shetland news online  - £1,575
Snapchat  - £79,557
Spotify -  £41,033
Spotify self-serve -  £96,377
Sublime skinz -  £14,815
Tan Media Ltd -  £7,793
Teads ad manager  - £296,674~
The ferret  - £1,575
The Lochside press  - £840
The Sun  - £65,200
Tiktok -  £73,688
Trinity mirror network online -  £73,956
Twitch UK Ltd  - £20,000
Twitter international company -  £491,846
You tube (Google) -  £8,522

However, we are able to provide the expenditure broken down by media channel for the stated time period for campaigns relating to Coronavirus.

Video on demand -  £2,729,674
Digital -  £4,515,845
Poster  - £2,243,576
Press -  £3,666,113
Radio  - £2,741,879
Television -  £7,128,339

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG